Richard Dunne was one of the surprise names when Mick McCarthy announced his Republic of Ireland squad for the friendly with Greece on April 26 at Lansdowne Road. It's the central defender's first official call-up to the squad. Also the uncapped Stephen McPhail of Leeds Utd and Fulham midfielder Steve Finnan have been included in the 22-man squad, and McCarthy indicated that all three are likely to figure at some stage of the match.
"Richard Dunne will get his chance as he has been playing consistently well for Everton and has improved no end this season. Stephen McPhail has shown great vision for Leeds and has great ability on the ball," said McCarthy. "It's all a question of preparing properly for our opening World Cup game against Holland in Amsterdam next September.
"This match against Greece and then next month's fixture in Dublin against Scotland, as well as our US Cup games in America against Mexico, South Africa and the United States, gives me an opportunity to try out a number of players."
Defenders Paul Butler and Phil Babb and midfielder Matt Holland are missing from the squad which defeated the Czech Republic 3-2 at Landsdowne Road.
Squad: A Kelly (Blackburn), Given (Newcastle Utd), Kiely (Charlton); G Kelly (Leeds Utd), Carr (Tottenham), Staunton (Liverpool), Cunningham (Wimbledon), Harte (Leeds), Breen (Coventry), Dunne (Everton), Kennedy (Man City), Roy Keane (Man Utd), Kinsella (Charlton), McPhail (Leeds), McAteer (Blackburn), Kilbane (Sunderland), Duff (Blackburn), Finnan (Fulham), Quinn (Sunderland), Robbie Keane (Coventry), Connolly (Excelsior), Delap (Derby).
Meanwhile, Under 21's boss Don Givens, has included no fewer than 11 new caps in his 19-man squad for the international against Greece at Newbridge, County Kildare, on Tuesday April 25. Named in the squad are six League of Ireland players - goalkeeper Gary Connaughton (Athlone Town), the UCD pair of Clive Delaney and Ciaran Martyn, strikers Richie Baker (Shelbourne) and Conor O'Grady (Sligo Rovers) and Waterford United defender Tim McGrath.
Givens is able to call on the experienced Barry Quinn (Coventry), Thomas Heary (Huddersfield), Colin Healy (Celtic), Graham Barrett (Arsenal) and Michael Reddy (Sunderland) - all of whom have first team experience for their clubs this season.